Loaded Savory Oatmeal & Lentil Bowl, The

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

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I totally expected to dislike this dish (fussy eater problems!) but, much to my surprise, I loved it. Like, finished the bowl and licked it clean loved it. It’s even better than the Apple Pie Oatmeal, yo! Plus it’s quick to whip up – just 15 minutes, and it’s so unfussy a recipe that I was able to remove it from the stovetop mid-cooking so that I could feed the dogs their dinner. Very cool.

Shane enjoyed his with the recommended hummus and avocados, while I went with crackers, chia seeds, and avocado toast. This was also my first time trying mashed avocados as a spread, and I was again pleasantly surprised; avocados don’t have a super-strong flavor, so really the spread tastes like whatever seasonings you put on top. In my case, salt and pepper.

Apple Pie Oatmeal

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

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Another day, another recipe from The Oh She Glows Cookbook. This stovetop oatmeal dish is packed with hearty goodness: rolled oats, fresh apples, chia seeds, nondairy milk, applesauce, walnuts, coconut shreds, you name it. It requires more energy than I’m capable of mustering first thing in the morning, but seeing as I’m a breakfast anytime kind of girl, this also makes a wonderfully quick lunch or dinner.

The one thing I’d change? Instead of cooking the apples with the rolled oats, I think I’d rather add them to the oatmeal near the end, so that they’d still nice and crunchy and raw.

Supposedly it only serves one, but one batch is more than I can eat by my lonesome.

Also, bonus point for moi: I think this is the closest my food will ever come to looking like the pictures in the cookbook!

Cranberry Cinnamon Oatmeal Soft Serve

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

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Oatmeal! Who doesn’t love the stuff? Even the fussiest of kids will happily down a bowl, as long as you dress it up with chocolate chips and gummy candy and other assorted sweet treats. (Totally speaking from personal experience here. From the fussy kid’s perspective, natch.)

Cinnamon oatmeal with dried cranberries is a staple around my house*; the oats are good for my heart and digestive system and the cranberries help to prevent UTIs. Plus it’s delicious, hello! Even the dogs get into the act come breakfast time, begging for their daily serving of cranberries. (Or, in Mags’s case, demanding.) It’s a family affair.

Given my passion for oatmeal (too much?), this dessert was inevitable. Unstoppable. HAD TO HAPPEN. I give you: Cranberry Cinnamon Oatmeal Soft Serve – cranberry cinnamon oatmeal in soft serve form. With bananas, ’cause you should always bring a banana to party.

 

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Cranberry Cinnamon Oatmeal Soft Serve

(Makes just under one quart of ice cream.)

Ingredients

3-4 overripe bananas, peeled, sliced and frozen
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons quick oats, divided
1/2 cup water or nondairy milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
6 tablespoons dried cranberries, divided
sugar to taste (optional)
a splash of non-dairy milk or creamer, if needed

Directions

1. Combine 1/4 cup of quick oats, 1/2 cup of water, and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon sugar in a microwave safe bowl; mix well. Microwave for 60 seconds and stir again. Allow the oatmeal to cool to room temp, either on the countertop or in the fridge.

2. Put the bananas in the food processor and pulse until smoothly blended. Most likely you’ll need to stir them by hand several times, as the frozen chunks tend to gather and become “stuck” on one side of the bowl. If necessary, add a splash of non-dairy milk or creamer to get things moving!

Alternately, you can allow the bananas to defrost on the counter top for 30 to 60 minutes beforehand, so that they’re easier to work with. Before putting them in the food processor, break them up into smaller chunks with a butter knife.

Note: Since introducing extra liquids (such as non-dairy milk) into the mix results in a slightly icier finished product, I prefer defrosting to non-dairy milk. If you’re in a hurry, pop the bananas in the microwave for 20 to 45 seconds instead.

3. If the bananas aren’t sweet enough for your taste (sometimes this happens if you freeze them before they’re sufficiently ripe), add a bit of sugar to taste. Any sugar works fine – white, brown, etc. – but I find that powdered sugar results in a smoother blend.

4. Add the oatmeal, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, and 3 tablespoons of cranberries and pulse until well blended. Add the last three tablespoons of cranberries and the 2 tablespoons of quick oats and pulse several times, just enough to mix the cranberries and oats into the ice cream batter (but not enough to chop them up into small bits).

5. Transfer the ice cream to an airtight container. Enjoy immediately as soft serve, or pop the ice cream in the freezer for an hour+ for a firmer dessert. Store any leftovers in the freezer in an airtight container. If the frozen banana ice cream proves too hard to scoop, microwave it for ten seconds to help loosen it up (or let the container sit on the counter for ten to thirty minutes prior to eating, depending on room temp).

6. Serve with a dusting of cinnamon sugar for extra shiny measure!

 

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Kaylee creeper, wants some ice cream!
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Iron Chef, Doggie Edition: Cinnamon Cranberry Carrot Oatmeal

Saturday, October 29th, 2011

My poor little lady Kaylee was brutalized at the vet’s yesterday. She went in for a dental cleaning and ended up having two teeth extracted. To be fair, this was no real surprise, what with her past dental issues. But her one remaining fang, GONE! The horror and injustice of it all!
 

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Kaylee circa 2007, after her second round of dental surgery. If you look closely (or click through to flickr for the notes!), you can see how her mouth is lopsided: many of the teeth on the left side of her mouth were removed, making her look adorably silly, but also kinda sad. As of yesterday, the “fang” on the right side of her mouth is now history, too.
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At our request, the vet also removed some rather large fatty deposits – which had been growing progressively larger over the past few years – from her left shoulder and right side. The one near her rib cage was especially stubborn coming out, and she’s got the 2″-long, ragged, angry red incision to prove it. Her shoulder looks even worse: because she had two lumps there (don’t worry, all benign, thank dog!), he had to make two separate incisions, which kind of meld together visually for an especially horrifying effect. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

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VeganMoFo, Day 6: 1,001 Ways to Enjoy Oatmeal (for reals!)

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

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What’s that? 1,001 ways to enjoy oatmeal? Surely I exaggerate! Actually, I think I’m underestimating the many, many ways one can serve a seemingly simple bowl of oatmeal. Don’t believe me? Keep on reading for 123 basic ingredients (most of which come in several different forms, flavors and whatnot) that can allow you to enjoy oatmeal every day for a year – without ever making the same dish twice!

Shane offered to write a script to generate every possible combination of the ingredients I’ve compiled below, but that would be a little much, dontchathink? Not to mention, gross and overwhelming: A bowl of oatmeal with white and brown sugar, agave nectar, maple syrup, chocolate soy milk, chocolate chips, cocoa powder and chocolate-covered soy nuts might very well send you right back to bed with a sugar headache to beat all sugar headaches.

On the other hand, many of the possible (human-generated) combinations sound absolutely delightful:

* Rolled oats cooked in water, sweetened with maple syrup, and garnished with a handful of pecans – the perfect morning pick-me-up!

* Quick oats with vanilla soy milk, a dash of white sugar, and fresh and dried blueberries – yum!

* Chewy rolled oats mixed with peanut butter and strawberry jelly – brown bagging it to the office, anyone?

* Steel-cut oats flavored with a cup of chai tea, sweetened with a squirt of agave nectar, and topped off with a generous serving of cranberries – why aren’t more restaurants on the oatmeal bandwagon, yo!?

At first glance, some of the ingredients I’ve thunk up may strike you as a little odd: marshmallows and chocolate chips in oatmeal!? While I don’t recommend that you make a habit out of marrying oats and jelly beans, candy-decorated oatmeal is a delicious indulgence. And nostalgic, too!: As a kid, I hated oatmeal. Loathed the stuff. Well, the “boring” (read: healthy) “adult” oatmeal, anyhow. When my mom occasionally bought the fun, cartoon-themed, kid-oriented flavors, I downed oatmeal with gusto. I can still remember this one variety of oatmeal (Quaker, probably), which had these little gummy dinosaurs mixed in with the quick oats. Once the “eggs” met with water, the candied exterior dissolved, “hatching” the dino beneath. (From ages 6 through 13, I fancied myself a budding archaeologist, you see.) Ah, memories!

Now that I’m older (and more health-conscious), I no longer eschew “boring” oatmeal. Truth be told, I love the stuff. In fact, VeganMoFo caught me in the middle of an oatmeal kick. I rotate between three morning meals – dry cereal, bagels with fruit preserves, and oatmeal – jumping from a run of one to a run of another, usually on a monthly basis. I’ve been stuck on oatmeal for a few months now, so come to think of it, I’m long overdue for a change. But after this post, I might never eat dry cereal or a bagel for breakfast again! So many possibilities, so quick and simple – and so delicious!

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Here’s how I usually do it:

First thing in the morning, I start out with a cup of juice with which to down my morning supplements. Before sitting down with my drink, I get the oatmeal going: I pour about 1 1/2 cups of quick oats into a bowl, sprinkle on a little sugar and cinnamon (purchased separately, but mixed in an old margarine container for maximum efficiency – I’m not too coordinated in the AM!), cover the concoction with some water and/or soy milk, and let it sit for a bit. When I’m ready to eat, I toss in a handful of dried fruit (usually cranberries, cherries, blueberries, and/or apples) and microwave the dish for 60 seconds. Voilà! A hot, nutritious breakfast in less than three minutes!

I especially love how Silk’s seasonal Pumpkin Spice soymilk tastes in oatmeal (and tea!), but alas, the year’s still a little middle-aged for Pumpkin Spice. Well, at least it gives me something to look forward to!

Well, now that I’ve said just about everything there is to say about oatmeal, let’s have a look at those ingredients.

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Oatmeal Banana Cookies: Doggy edition! (And a big plate of lemon FAIL)

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

Update, 3/30/09: Actually, I take that back. The lemon cookies weren’t so much a huge plate of FAIL as an exercise in delayed gratification: they tasted much better the next morning, once the doughy-ness had transformed to chewiness. Methinks the problem rests not in the batter or cook time, but in my lack of a cooling rack. Currently, I have to remove freshly baked cookies from the sheet asap, otherwise they tend to stick. The lemon cookies probably needed to sit a bit, hence the trouble I encountered when scraping them off. A cooling rack might make all the difference.

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The last time I made a batch of Oatmeal Banana Cookies, I wasn’t able to enjoy them as much as I would’ve liked. Truth be told, I felt a wee bit guilty. The dogs, you see, started begging like lil’ vegan monsters before the goodies even came out of the oven. I’m fairly certain that they thought the cookies were meant for them, since the week before I’d made some pizza biscuits for Rennie’s birthday. So I resolved to adapt the recipe to make a doggy edition.

Which I did, yesterday. I took the last version of the human Oatmeal Banana Cookie recipe and made a few changes: omitted the salt, cut the sugar down to almost nothing, and added a few extra ingredients that I just so happened to have on hand. The result? Total success! The dogs absolutely loved the cookies. They’re also 100% suitable for human consumption (really, shouldn’t everything we feed our nonhuman friends be?), if a little bland. By which I mean unsweetened. But maybe unsweetened is your thing?

Again, this recipe has proven extremely versatile. The oat/soymilk combo makes the dough impossible to mess up: Too dry? Add some soymilk! Too wet? Toss in some oats and/or let sit! As long as you taste test the dough before baking, and like what goes in, you’ll love what comes out of the oven.

Oatmeal Banana Cookies: Doggy edition!

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Ingredients

1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon + a little extra to taste
1/2 cup of dark brown sugar (or less)
Slightly less than 1/3 of a cup of vegetable oil
1 banana, mashed to liquid (the riper, the better)
1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/2 to 1 cup of water or soy milk
2 1/4 cups of quick oats
Several handfuls, give or take, dried fruit (cranberries, cherries, blueberries, apricots, etc.) to taste; for this recipe, I used about 4 handfuls of dried cranberries and 4 of homemade dehydrated apple slices

Note: If this is for your furry friends, do not use chocolate chips! Or raisins! Or grapes! Or onions or onion powder! Um, not that you’d put onions in oatmeal banana cookies. That would just be gross.

Optional: Add some backstrap molasses, nutmeg and/or wheat germ.

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In which my Oatmeal Banana Cookies get even better.

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

Right before I got sick last week, I made another batch of those super-awesome “Best Oat Cookies that Ever Existed,” courtesy of satan at VegWeb. I wanted to try a healthier version – especially considering how quickly I scarfed ’em all down before – so I tweaked the recipe a bit: I cut the sugar nearly in half, added an extra banana, and threw in some dried cranberries along with the chocolate chips. The new batch came out even better than the original; the sweetness of the dried fruit more than made up for the lost sugar. I hope to try it again when I’m able to procure some dried cherries and blueberries, maybe some apricots, too. Alas, the only dried fruit currently residing in my cupboard is cranberries, so I guess the extra-loaded version of this recipe will have to wait.

Oatmeal Banana Cookies (was: Best Oat Cookies that Ever Existed)

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Ingredients

1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon + a little extra to taste
1/2 of a teaspoon of salt
1/2 cup of brown sugar + a little extra to taste
1/4 of a cup of regular white sugar + a little extra to taste
Slightly less than 1/3 of a cup of vegetable oil
1 banana, mashed to liquid (the riper, the better)
1 banana, mashed to chunks
1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/2 to 1 cup of water or soy milk (I used Silk Pumpkin Spice; Soy Nog will also work well)
2 1/4 cups of quick oats
1 handful, give or take, chocolate chips to taste
Several handfuls, give or take, dried fruit (cranberries, cherries, blueberries, apricots, etc.) to taste; for this recipe, I used about 4 handfuls of dried cranberries

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"The best cookies you’ve ever made."

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

So said Shane last night, upon tasting these super-yummy banana-oatmeal cookies, from satan (!) on VegWeb. After nearly 24 hours of nonstop snacking, I’ve got to agree.

As usual, my amateur-at-best photos don’t come anywhere close to doing this dessert justice.

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I think it’s the banana-oatmeal base that really makes these cookies rock. I tossed in some chocolate chips, but methinks the recipe would be just as good without the chocolate bling. For a healthier cookie, substitute dried cherries, cranberries, blueberries and/or apples (and/or some walnuts or similar) in place of the chocolate chips. Or, heck, in addition to. This recipe strikes me as super versatile.

And not having to muck with egg substitute? Priceless.

Keep reading for my modified version of the VegWeb recipe.

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